Category Archives: Google LatLong Blog

News and notes by the Google Earth and Maps team

Take a walk through Kakadu on Google Street View

In Australia’s Top End, you will find the country’s largest national park: Kakadu National Park. Covering almost 20,000 square kilometers (about half the size of Switzerland) and with terrain encompassing wetlands, rivers and sandstone escarpments, it’s home to the world’s oldest living culture with more than a dozen Indigenous groups. One-third of Australia’s bird species, an estimated 10,000 crocodiles and approximately 2,000 plant species can also be found in the Park.


Today, on its 40th anniversary, we're inviting people across the world to visit Kakadu National Park on Google Street View—to walk through ancient “stone country”, stare at spectacular waterfalls and discover ancient rock art.
Street View Trekker at Nawurlandja

Google Street View Trekker taking in the panoramas at Nawurlandja. 

Considered a living cultural landscape, Kakadu National Park’s geological history spans more than two billion years. The Park is a place that boasts extraordinary archaeological sites that record the skills and ways of life of the region’s Aboriginal people, whose culture stretches back more than 65,000 years. The Street View journey captures a glimpse of this world, uncovering rock art galleries and stunning vistas across eight sites.

Anja Toms from Kakadu National Park

Anja Toms from Kakadu National Park explains the significance of rock art at Burrungkuy (Nourlangie).

Viewers can journey to Ubirr for incredible 360-degree views, or to take a look at rock art galleries that record animal life in the region going back thousands of years. This includes a painting of a thylacine—or Tasmanian Tiger—depicted before they became extinct on the mainland around 2,000 years ago.

Kakadu National Park Rangers

Sean Nadji and Fred Hunter, Kakadu National Park Rangers, look out over Ubirr.

You can also meander through towering sandstone pillars at Bardedjilidji, travel to Nawurlandja for world-class panoramas across Anbangbang Billabong and the Arnhem Land escarpment, and toward Burrungkuy (Nourlangie) where you can view rock art galleries, before cooling off in the pristine plunge pools at Maguk or Gunlom (one of the most popular sites for travellers looking to take a refreshing dip), then diving into Kakadu’s big waterfalls: Twin Falls and Jim Jim Falls.

This journey through Kakadu National Park is a continuation of our work with Traditional Owners, Tourism Northern Territory and Parks Australia to record and share sacred sites, and instill greater value and respect for the land—which began in 2017 with Uluṟu-Kata Tjuṯa National Park.

Visit Kakadu National Park, dual-listed by UNESCO World Heritage for both its natural and cultural significance, on Google Street View to learn more about the world’s oldest living culture and their connection with the land.


Source: Google LatLong


Take a walk through Kakadu on Google Street View

In Australia’s Top End, you will find the country’s largest national park: Kakadu National Park. Covering almost 20,000 square kilometers (about half the size of Switzerland) and with terrain encompassing wetlands, rivers and sandstone escarpments, it’s home to the world’s oldest living culture with more than a dozen Indigenous groups. One-third of Australia’s bird species, an estimated 10,000 crocodiles and approximately 2,000 plant species can also be found in the Park.


Today, on its 40th anniversary, we're inviting people across the world to visit Kakadu National Park on Google Street View—to walk through ancient “stone country”, stare at spectacular waterfalls and discover ancient rock art.
Street View Trekker at Nawurlandja

Google Street View Trekker taking in the panoramas at Nawurlandja. 

Considered a living cultural landscape, Kakadu National Park’s geological history spans more than two billion years. The Park is a place that boasts extraordinary archaeological sites that record the skills and ways of life of the region’s Aboriginal people, whose culture stretches back more than 65,000 years. The Street View journey captures a glimpse of this world, uncovering rock art galleries and stunning vistas across eight sites.

Anja Toms from Kakadu National Park

Anja Toms from Kakadu National Park explains the significance of rock art at Burrungkuy (Nourlangie).

Viewers can journey to Ubirr for incredible 360-degree views, or to take a look at rock art galleries that record animal life in the region going back thousands of years. This includes a painting of a thylacine—or Tasmanian Tiger—depicted before they became extinct on the mainland around 2,000 years ago.

Kakadu National Park Rangers

Sean Nadji and Fred Hunter, Kakadu National Park Rangers, look out over Ubirr.

You can also meander through towering sandstone pillars at Bardedjilidji, travel to Nawurlandja for world-class panoramas across Anbangbang Billabong and the Arnhem Land escarpment, and toward Burrungkuy (Nourlangie) where you can view rock art galleries, before cooling off in the pristine plunge pools at Maguk or Gunlom (one of the most popular sites for travellers looking to take a refreshing dip), then diving into Kakadu’s big waterfalls: Twin Falls and Jim Jim Falls.

This journey through Kakadu National Park is a continuation of our work with Traditional Owners, Tourism Northern Territory and Parks Australia to record and share sacred sites, and instill greater value and respect for the land—which began in 2017 with Uluṟu-Kata Tjuṯa National Park.

Visit Kakadu National Park, dual-listed by UNESCO World Heritage for both its natural and cultural significance, on Google Street View to learn more about the world’s oldest living culture and their connection with the land.


Source: Google LatLong


Four tools to help drive your nonprofit’s mission forward

Google for Nonprofits started as a conversation about a volunteer program in an elevator in our New York office in 2010. Today, Google for Nonprofits has connected more than 200,000 nonprofits around the globe with Google products to help them run their organizations.

We believe that technology can do good in the world, which is why we offer eligible organizations access to a suite of Google products at no cost. Here’s a look at what each of the Google for Nonprofits products has to offer:

Bring teams together with G Suite for Nonprofits

G Suite is a set of integrated apps, including Gmail, Docs, Calendar, Drive and Hangouts Meet. It helps organizations with productivity, collaboration, and security—with G Suite, teammates can work from anywhere, on any device and focus their time on making an impact. If your nonprofit works across different locations, you can use G Suite to organize online video conferences on Hangouts, create group chats, work together simultaneously on the same document and much more.

Team Rubicon UK is a disaster response organization that needs to be prepared for and quickly respond to crises around the world. Using Google Forms and Sheets, Team Rubicon can go from 1,000 potential volunteers to a group of 12 skilled volunteers on the ground supporting a crisis within 24 hours.

Reach more supporters with Google Ad Grants

Google Ad Grants connects people to causes with $10,000 per month in free Google Advertising. Nonprofits can create ads to raise awareness, attract donors and help people around the world.

American Humane, the first national humane group in the U.S., uses Ad Grants to increase the organization's exposure and educate people on their work in the animal welfare space. In one year, Google Ads drove over 1,000 new people to donate or sign up to volunteer and over 600 people to complete a service dog application.

Show your nonprofit’s impact with Google Maps & Earth

Google’s mapping tools help nonprofits in a wide range of ways, from tracking and sharing an organization’s impact to taking supporters on a virtual tour. To help organizations get started, Google for Nonprofits provides Google Maps Platform credits to nonprofits.  

iNaturalist, part of the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, uses Google Maps Platform to encourage environmental stewardship. It uses crowdsourcing, maps and photo sharing to gather data that helps conversationalist save a species before it becomes extinct. iNaturalist has succeeded in its goal of getting hundreds of thousands of people to connect with the natural world and continues to help scientists discover crucial findings about species.

Engage your supporters using video with the YouTube Nonprofits Program

YouTube amplifies your nonprofit’s reach by telling your story to a global audience.  Through the YouTube Nonprofit program, you’ll get access to Link Anywhere Cards that direct your viewers to your external campaign landing pages and to Creator Academy lessons tailored to nonprofits. Your nonprofit can also get access to the YouTube Space in Los Angeles or New York to shoot or edit your videos at YouTube’s creator studio. Just visit Space LA or Space NY and click the “Apply Now” button.

KMVT 15 is an award-winning nonprofit television station and media center that provides a community forum, media literacy education, hands-on training and civic engagement to local residents. KMVT 15 used YouTube for Nonprofits to engage its audience at a global scale: their YouTube channel has garnered more than 4.5 million views and seven thousand subscribers with a minimal marketing budget.

We’re inspired every day by the nonprofits across more than 50 countries who use our products to advocate their causes and make a real difference. If you’re interested in how Google’s technology can help your nonprofit, click here tolearn more.

Source: Google LatLong


Down under, over and all around: Sydney in 3D on Google Earth

Google Earth is one of the world's most comprehensive 3D maps available. In addition to global satellite and terrain coverage, over the past several years we've been adding highly detailed 3D imagery of entire cities and towns, from the iconic architecture of cities like New York and Paris to views of landmarks like the Grand Canyon. And now, we’re sharing 3D imagery of central Sydney, Australia!

But 3D imagery of Sydney isn’t the only thing that’s new today. We've made many incremental improvements to our modeling process that, overall, help us achieve an even more precise 3D landscape. (You can check out this video to learn more about the process.) For a while now, parts of Sydney—sites like Sydney Harbour Bridge and Bondi Beach—have already been available in 3D. Expect to see this quality across all of our new Earth imagery.

Central Sydney sits beneath busy airspace, so it’s taken a while to make 3D models of the area. We’ve finally collected enough imagery to build a more complete picture of this iconic city. Explore landmarks like the Sydney Opera House and popular tourist spots Darling Harbour and The Rocks. You can even plan your next visit to Sydney with our guided tour, Explore Sydney.

You can see all the places where we have 3D imagery available in Google Earth.

Source: Google LatLong


To help fight the opioid crisis, a new tool from Maps and Search

In 2017, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) declared the opioid crisis a public health emergency, with over 130 Americans dying every day from opioid-related drug overdoses.  Last month, we saw that search queries for “medication disposal near me” reached an all-time high on Google.

opioids_data

53 percent of prescription drug abuse starts with drugs obtained from family or friends, so we’re working alongside government agencies and nonprofit organizations to help people safely remove excess or unused opioids from their medicine cabinets. Last year, we partnered with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) for National Prescription Take Back Day by developing a Google Maps API  locator tool to help people dispose of their prescription drugs at temporary locations twice a year. With the help of this tool, the DEA and its local partners collected a record 1.85 million pounds of unused prescription drugs in 2018.

Today, we’re making it easier for Americans to quickly find disposal locations on Google Maps and Search all year round. A search for queries like “drug drop off near me” or “medication disposal near me” will display permanent disposal locations at your local pharmacy, hospital or government building so you can quickly and safely discard your unneeded medication.



opioid_gif

This pilot has been made possible thanks to the hard work of many federal agencies, states and pharmacies. Companies like Walgreens and CVS Health, along with state governments in Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan and Pennsylvania have been instrumental in this project, contributing data with extensive lists of public and private disposal locations. The DEA is already working with us to provide additional location data to expand the pilot.

For this pilot, we also looked to public health authorities—like HHS—for ideas on how technology can help communities respond to the opioid crisis. In fact, combining disposal location data from different sources was inspired by a winning entry at the HHS’s Opioid Code-A-Thon held a year ago.

We’ll be working to expand coverage and add more locations in the coming months. To learn more about how your state or business can bring more disposal locations to Google Maps and Search, contact RXdisposal-data@google.com today.


Source: Google LatLong


Now on iOS: Follow your favorite places on Google Maps

Starting this week, you can stay up to date on your favorite places right from the Google Maps app on iOS. Simply search for a place—whether it’s a new restaurant that just opened up in your neighborhood or that must-try bakery across town—and tap the Follow button. You’ll then be able to see important updates from these places in your For you tab so you can quickly learn about upcoming events, offers and more.  

igmm_follow

And now, places and businesses all over the world can see their followers in the Google My Business app, and actively post helpful information for their followers to see. The Follow button starts rolling out on iOS today.

Source: Google LatLong


For the holidays and beyond, your travel planning guide is here

With the holidays approaching, many of us will travel to see family or go on a vacation. Whether you’re heading out of town over the next few weeks or starting to think about a trip in the new year, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite tools to help make travel just a little bit easier.

Check to make sure your flight is on time

Earlier this year, we started sharing flight delay predictions when you search for your flight status and we’re 85% confident that the flight will eventually be delayed. We use historic flight status data combined with machine learning to make these predictions in advance of airlines confirming delays.

To help with the increase in delayed flights this time of year, the Google Assistant now shows you predicted flight delays, too. You can ask things like, “Hey Google, is my flight on time?” or “Hey Google, what’s the status of the American Airlines flight from Philadelphia to Denver?”

And to make it easier to stay up-to-date on changes to your flight time, over the next few weeks the Assistant will begin proactively notifying you on your phone if we predict a flight delay and tell you the reason if we know it.

Assistant Flight Status

Get the lay of the land with Maps

Traveling to a new destination over the holidays? Google Maps can help when you’re navigating and discovering new places where you live, but it’s also essential when traveling somewhere unfamiliar. We’ve recently added information that is especially useful for travelers exploring a new city. Swipe up on the Explore tab at the bottom of your screen to get ideas of what to do.

Google Maps Travel

Plan your post-holiday vacation

Whether you’re coming off a holiday high or in need of relaxation after all the hustle and bustle, the beginning of the new year is a prime time to think about your next trip. Earlier this year, we unveiled a tool that shows you historic flight price trends, top cities with hotel deals and popular things to do. Now you’ll also see upcoming holiday and school breaks, so you can plan trips around those dates.

If you’re looking for a destination with a good mix of activities for you and the group you’re traveling with, start by searching for “things to do” on Google. In addition to top attractions and relevant articles, you’ll now also see popular experiences for the top destinations worldwide. For example, if you search for “things to do in Nashville” you’ll see things like sporting events, wine tours and hiking in your results. We’ve also recently redesigned things to do to make it easier to filter for your interests, including a new kid-friendly option on phones. You can also now see things to do on a map.


Things to do in Nashville

When you’re ready to start looking at flight prices, Google Flights helps you understand what’s included in your ticket price. You’ll see if prices include a carry-on bag and can filter to see the prices that include carry-on luggage. Now you can also filter to include checked bag fees for domestic flights in the U.S.

Bags filter

Wherever you’re headed during this festive time of year, enjoy your time off and travel safely.

Source: Google LatLong


Travel that last mile with Google Maps and Lime

You just got off your train and you have seven minutes to get to your first meeting on time—but it’ll take you 15 minutes to walk the rest of the way. You don’t have time to walk, your bus is delayed and the next ridesharing vehicle isn’t set to arrive for another 10 minutes. So close, yet so far. 


Today, we’re teaming up with Lime to help you find a better way to travel these short distances. In 13 cities around the world, you’ll now be able to see nearby Lime scooters, pedal bikes and e-bikes as a transportation option right from Google Maps. Simply navigate to your destination and tap on the transit icon to see your nearby options. If a Lime vehicle is available, you’ll see how long it’ll take to walk to the vehicle, an estimate of how much your ride could cost, and your total journey time and ETA. Tapping on the Lime card will take you right to the Lime app, where you can see the exact location of the vehicle and easily unlock it. If you don’t have the Lime app installed, you’ll be taken to the App or Play store.


limeSJ

Tap on the transit tab to see nearby Lime vehicles. Vehicle options vary by city.


You can now see Lime scooters and bikes on Google Maps on Android and iOS in Auckland, Austin, Baltimore, Brisbane (AU), Dallas, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, San Diego, Oakland, San Antonio, San Jose, Scottsdale and Seattle with more cities coming soon—so you can get to that meeting right on Lime.

Source: Google LatLong


The For You tab comes to iOS and over 130 countries on Android

It’s officially the holiday season, which means lots of time spent with friends and family. But all of that together time can sometimes leave you wondering “um...what should we do now?” After all, there are only so many board games you can play before a mini family feud breaks out.


Today, the For You tab is making its way over to Google Maps in over 40 countries on iOS and 130+ new countries on Android—helping you stay up to date on fun, new places so you’ll know exactly where to take the fam this winter. The For You tab is designed to be a constant source of inspiration tailored to your tastes and preferences. Simply follow neighborhoods or places you’re interested in to get updates and recommendations—everything from recent news about an opening or pop up, a new menu item, and even restaurant suggestions based on what you’re likely to enjoy. If you’re making a trip this holiday season, the For You can help you get a jump start on travel planning even before you take off.


foryougif

The For You tab starts rolling out more widely today. Whether you’re staying local or traveling to a new city, let the For You tab be your guide for your next culinary adventure.

Source: Google LatLong


Find Halloween tricks, treats and other goodies in your neighborhood

You can find pretty much anything on Google Maps—a restaurant that matches your personal preferences, a place to charge your electric vehicle, or your local farmer’s market. But for those instances when Google Maps itself doesn’t have what you need, Google Maps Platform powers millions of third party experiences to help you find what you’re looking for—using the same map you know and love.  


For Halloween, that means Nextdoor’s annual Halloween Treat Map, which allows neighbors to mark their homes with a candy corn icon if they plan to pass out candy, a haunted house icon if they plan to give their neighbors a spooky trick, or a teal pumpkin icon if they plan to pass out non-food treats.


                                             


Wondering why the non-food treat option exists? According to FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education), one in 13 children has a food allergy. For children with allergies, even a tiny trace of their allergen has the potential to cause a severe reaction. Unfortunately, many popular Halloween candies contain nuts, milk, egg, soy or wheat, which are some of the most common allergens in children and adults. By providing non-food treats, neighbors can help create a safe, fun alternative for children with food allergies and other conditions for whom candy may present a problem. And the Treat Map helps parents of those children find the homes in their neighborhood to stop by to make sure they have a safe and fun trick-or-treat experience.


Nextdoor is a free and private social network for neighborhoods used in over 210,000 communities across the globe—so chances are you’ll have a Treat Map in your very own neighborhood. To see for yourself, download the Nextdoor app from Google Play or the App Store or find it on the web at www.nextdoor.com.

Source: Google LatLong